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FDNY Firefighter Anthony Harper says he is ostracized because he’s a vegetarian. Department spokesman calls claims ‘nonsense’.

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FDNY spokesman Jim Long made the position of the department very clear to the New York Post asking questions about Firefighter Anthony Harper’s claims he is being ostracized because he’s a vegetarian. Long calls it “nonsense”, telling reporter Philip Messing, “Firehouses across the city have individuals who are vegetarians or who have special diets — i.e., food allergies, etc. — and they are accommodated all the time.”

But Firefighter Harper believes his problems began two-years-ago at Ladder 146 in Greenpoint, Brooklyn when he decided constant firehouse meals with chicken or meat dishes were not good for his health. Harper says opting out of those meals didn’t sit well with fellow firefighters who he says also harassed him about his food choices. Harper believes this all resulted in him being transferred to a desk job at headquarters, is impacting his chances for promotion and caused him to be the only FDNY firefighter written up because he couldn’t get to work from his Staten Island home after Hurricane Sandy.

More from The New York Post:

But he said the harassment grew to the point where he became a pariah who was regularly given dangerous assignments on the roofs of burning buildings and threatened with physical violence.

One fellow firefighter, he said, head-butted him during a petty dispute about looking at a roster.

“I was fat,’’ he said. “I realized that I needed to make some changes.”

So I gave up cigars and meat, and I lost 35 pounds. And now my blood work is like it was when I was in the Army, when I was 21 years old.”

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Comments - Add Yours

  • Greg S,

    Something ain’t right with his story. There has got to be more too it. Ostracized and harassed because he is a vegetarian? Gimme a break. He implied his fellow firefighters were trying to injure or kill him by routinely directing him to “dangerous assignments on the roofs of burning buildings”. Well, he worked on a ladder company…last I checked, that is what they do for pete’s sake. He is so mistreated that after 8 years with the department he is on the promotion list for lieutenant. Sounds to me like he has a problem getting along with people.

  • BH

    This should be interesting, when one person finds the story at least reasonably plausible and then the Fidnee worshipers come out of the woodwork to smack him down….

    • Mack Seagrave

      Hey BH (Bone Head): What is your issue with the FDNY? Every chance you get you take a shot at the FDNY and / or folks who comment affirimatively about the FDNY. I’ve yet to see a comment that you’ve made about anything related to the FDNY where your attack has been credible or justified. When you post regarding issues of firefighting, you always expose your extreme lack of knowledge / experience. Are you even a firefighter (or a member of an F.D.)? BTW, many here have asked you this same question, but you never respond.

      • BH

        I have no problem with the FDNY as a department, with the possible exception of how they’ve treated their EMS system in the past.

        I do have a problem with people who think they can do no wrong. I also have a problem with people who think they’re a bunch of dinosaurs (usually from the West Coast, I’ve noticed). I have a problem with some things individual members have done that put a black eye on the department.

        But mostly I have a problem with anyone who takes themselves or an organization too seriously (especially one they don’t even belong to), which the worshipers definitely do.

  • CHAOS

    Well, this will certainly stop his being ostracized … said no one ever.

    If he gets that LT spot, wait and see how many transfer requests pop out of his crew. With people skills like this, he should be a joy to work for.

  • Anonymous

    Here is a thought, If you are that sensitive and needy maybe working and living in a firehouse in close quarters with a bunch of other people who live and eat together is not your thing. People join the fire service and then want everything about the job to be changed to suit them.

  • some guy

    wow, talking about being sent to the roof likes its a dangerous suicide mission he’s lucky to come back from. I thought that was the truck equivalent of the nozzle.

  • LT

    Its a firehouse. Everybody gets picked on and made fun of. Its all in good fun. If you cant take it, work somewhere else